Sunday, January 13, 2013

Old postcard of a suspicious-looking man mailing a letter

This postcard, which was originally mailed in 1914, features a questionable-looking individual mailing a letter.1

I didn't need to do much research on what "To my Mariutch" means within the context of this postcard. A fellow ephemera blogger has done that for me. Here is what author Kihm Winship2 wrote about the same postcard in September 2012 on Read, Seen, Heard:
"'To My Mariutch' is an allusion to a popular song from 1907, with words by Andrew B. Sterling and music by Harry Von Tilzer, 'Mariutch Down at Coney Isle' (aka 'Mariutch Dance Da Hootch-A-Ma-Kootch'). The song tells the comic tale of a man in New York who believes his wife is far away in Italy. To take his mind off his sadness, he goes to Coney Island, where he discovers his Mariutch performing the hoochie koochie. In 1930, the song appeared as a sing-along with the bouncing ball in a popular Max Fleischer cartoon."

If you love postcards, as I do, I suggest that you add Kihm's blog to your bookmarks. It's full of cool stuff.

So at least we know why this individual in the postcard looks cranky. He misses his wife. And he's going to become crankier, one would imagine, when he learns she's not in Italy, but on Coney Island, doing a belly dance.

The back of the postcard indicates that it was printed in Germany. It was postmarked in Milwaukee on January 30, 1914, and mailed to Miss Clara Fosler.3 The note, from a guy named Harry, is pretty lame:
"Dear Ladies!
I got through with my business (?) pretty quick, so I have time to send you the best regards from here."

1. If you want to get meta, you could say that man is either (1) glaring at the postcard artist, who is standing a few feet away and drawing a picture of him; or (2) glaring at US, the postcard viewers, as he stands there, eternally trapped within the confines of the illustration, like some Sun Dog.
2. Kihm describes his blog as: "Bits of wisdom, images, postcards, stuff I feel the need to share." He is the author of "Skaneateles: The Character and Characters of a Lakeside Village" and "The Adirondack Run."
3. Two semi-notable actors were born on January 30, 1914: John Ireland and David Wayne. Wayne guest-starred as Dr. George Wyler on three episodes of "St. Elsewhere" in the mid 1980s.

1 comment:

  1. I haven't read Sun Dog, but the wikipedia entry has convinced me there is no way I should even think of reading it. Took me 20 years to recover from Gerald's Game. I did read 11/22/63 without fear. Although, that one doesn't have any animal horror ... just a freaky Orange Card Man.